Attacks on Travellers


Over the past year, there has been a series of physical attacks on Travellers in different parts of the country. Travellers were attacked in Glenamaddy in New Ross, Wicklow and Bantry.

In Bantry, a group of hired vigilantes wearing balaclavas broke into the caravan of an elderly Traveller couple. They hit the woman in the face with a pick axe handle, breaking her nose and giving her dozens of stitches.

In Bray, thugs burnt the caravan of a local Traveller family, and their van. When the Council offered them another site in Rathnew, the locals chased them out of there too. No-one has been charged with these attacks.

The rise in racism against Travellers is happening all over Europe. Gypsies and Travellers from Eastern Europe are seen as fair game for racial abuse and attacks.

Patricia McCarthy

Originally published in Workers Solidarity 44, 1995